Texas study yields more PWC savings for Medicare

Sunday, March 27, 2005

March 28, 2005

BRYAN, Texas -  By providing a power wheelchair to a Medicare beneficiary, taxpayers save $8,760 per recipient over a three-year period, according to a new study by RRC, Inc.
RRC reached these findings after an independent re-examination of data analyzed for a Scooter Store study conducted last year. In that PREVIOUS study, the report showed savings of about $350 in savings per quarter for each recipient of a power chair.
The more recent refinements in the analysis indicate that savings, after accounting for the cost of the power vehicle, can be as high as $8,760 over a three-year period.  This amounts to a potential savings that is 65% higher than was previously indicated.
“We conducted this additional research at our own cost, partly for submission to a scholarly journal,” said and Clifford L. Fry, a Ph.D. economist and graduate of Texas A&M University. “We changed [our approach], and we hope improved it. We made the control group choice more stringent, but we didn’t expect to see increase this increase in savings.”
On this new study, Fry worked with Donald House, also, a Ph.D. economist and graduate of Texas A&M University, and Kent D. Nash, a Ph.D. economist and graduate of North Carolina State University.  All are former faculty members of Texas A&M University.
“We determined the savings for those receiving power vehicles were due to lower Medicare expenditures for inpatient hospitalization, home health care, skilled nursing facilities, and carrier costs,” House said in a prepared statement.  “These are the same types of expenditures in which savings were identified in our first study.”